Yesterday we brought you Kanye West rapping at 19-year-old, and today we go even further into the past to 1989, when Lil Yeezy recited a poem he had written about Martin Luther King Jr during a school assembly. We know he was a cutie back in the day — turns out, he was a a gifted writer and a born orator with extremely strong stage presence right from the get-go. Check out this long-lost footage of 12-year-old Kanye West reading his poem “His Name Is Love” below.
“A man who fought for freedom, a man who fought for equality
Those who were against him were too blind to see
This is what this man fighting for
So blacks, Jews, Spanish and Asians can put their foot in the door
Yes, we know that this man was great
That’s why his name we celebrate
And everyone lifts their voices and sing
For a man who let freedom ring
Martin Luther King is who I’m speaking of
A man who’s name means love.”
This vintage footage of Kanye was posted on DDotOmen on Martin Luther King Jr Day, the day after what would have been King’s 83rd birthday.